Disability Watchdog: Personal Assistance Decree in Valencia, Spain

Issue that was addressed

The approval of the new law that regulates Personal Assistance in Valencia (Spain), ENIL reacted presenting the Valencia Government a draft with changes and additions that should be included to the law before its presentation to public debate.

The Valencia Government in 2010 announced that in January 2011 this new law regulation would be implemented and included in the Disability Policy of Spain; Ley de Promoción de la Autonomía Personal y Atención a las Personas en Situación de Dependencia – LEPA

Measurements taken:

ENIL contacted the administration and appointed a meeting with the Regional Minister of Social Welfare, Ms. Angélica Such, in order to know all the details about the new law on PA. The law was sent to ENIL and it was studied and compared under the light of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities UNCRPD. ENIL counted with the support and assistance of members of the Forum of Independent Living and Divertad – FVID.

A document with the appropriate modifications that had to be included in the law to formulate it in accordance to the UNCRPD was produced and delivered to the Regional Ministry of Social Welfare.

On November 22nd 2010, ENIL and members of FVID were invited to a meeting with the Regional Minister who presented the final draft of the law where they had taken under account the changes suggested by ENIL and the members of the FVID.

The Decree was improved according to the document presented, but was not completely in accordance to the Convention yet, it included statements such as:

 

–         Personal Assistance will only be available for those disabled people who are evaluated as a Degree III of dependency. (The law establishes three grades of dependence: Degree I: medium dependence, Degree II: severe dependence  and Degree III: high dependence)

 

–         Personal Assistants are entitled to receive 12 payments a year instead of 14 standard payments. The PA will not have the right to receive a salary in case of sickness leave or holidays.

–         The Personal Assistant must be Qualified in the social-sanitary Area.

 

ENIL highlighted the violations of Human Rights still present in this law. The Valencia Government affirmed that if they considered all our suggestions, it would result in a conflict with the national disability law (LEPA) so the only option to ensure a better law on local level would be to change the national law.

One month after, ENIL presented the Valencian Government the Personal Assistance Decree approved in Guipuzcoa (Vasque country), which provides the users a monthly amount equal to the cost of an Institutional vacancy. The decree from Guipuzcoa could be considered nowadays the best decree at the moment and therefore should be used as an example and base by other municipalities that are drafting decrees and policies regarding PA.

 

Results of the action/ follow up:

 

ENIL presented the Valencian Government a document with the following demands for the Modification of he decree:

 

To extend the provisions to all the levels of dependency, in order to fulfil all the statements of the CRPD, art. 19b. The concession of the provisions should be regulated by the number of hour needed, as it is regulated in other provisions, such as the family carer, non-professional carer, etc.

 

– The government is giving a provision of residential service to Grade I, when PA is not allowed to this grade, this is an example of compatibility of the Spanish law (LEPA) to extend the service of PA to all grades.

 

– Essential: the decision of what is suitable depends on the user’s criteria, as it is established in the UN CRPD. “the right to decide where to live and who to live with”. So it should NEVER be the decision under the social worker criteria

 

– CHANCE TO EMPLOY MORE THAN ONE PA

 

– And what is more, the issues of vacations, sick leaves, redundancies…, all these concepts are not reflected and are compatible only with the home-care service. This goes against the Convention and we won’t accept it.

 

– If they insist in the necessity of a training course for PA, they must change this paragraph:

Accreditation of the professional qualification in home medical care or a similar qualification, established by the corresponding law.

Accreditation of the qualification of having completed a course according to the principles of the Convention and the Independent Living philosophy, which should be supervised by a disabled person.

 

We consider that the money budgeted for PA should be equal to the cost of a residencial resource in the Valencian Community.

 

– In the section of incompatibilities, it is Only admitted a sufficient and adequate provision.

 

The Decree has been published in June 2011 and will be implemented in July 2011. The government has adopted just three of the demands that we suggested at the beginning:

 

–         The provision of 1.300€ a month for Personal Assistance. Before the amount of the provision was 835€ a month.

–         The government extended the provision to the third Grade of dependency, levels I and II.[1] Before our demand, the provision was available for Grade III, level I.

–         Personal Assistance available since the age of three.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 



[1] There exist three grades of dependency, and in each Grade, levels I and II.

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